Sante Fe – Besides Great Architecture and Food, Jewish History too!

Walk the festive streets of this must-see destination, and you will step back and forth in American history. Wander the streets unhurried, and you will be treated to conversations with pleasant, informative street vendors selling handmade art.  This is a pedestrian friendly city with beautiful parks scattered throughout. Santa Fe has the more outdoor sculptures than any other city in the United States.  Visit the Oldest House in America, for a picture of the earliest American architecture and its Native American influence. 

Santa Fe is the Land of Blue Doors, where houses are surrounded by low walls, sage and juniper bushes.  The stately, colorful holly hock flowers rise above the brush and wave gracefully in the wind.  Children will love interacting with the numerous pieces of outdoor art which are easily accessible to the pedestrian. Touch the rough and smooth structures, each with a story of the American West to tell.

Santa Fe is a noisy city of outdoor music, protestors, Vespas and honking horns.  Nestled in  the Sante de Cristo Mountains, St. John’s College hosts escapees from the Washington Area. Lucky students can learn the classics, while soaking up the culture and art scene thriving in Santa Fe. 

One sight missed by most, is the top of the Basilica which has the Hebrew letter “Shin” on its soaring entryway.  When the Catholic community ran out of funds to finish the building located in the heart of the town, Jewish merchants bailed them out with donations of money and craftsmen to finish the Church.

Santa Fe is famous for its art and jewelry, for good reason.  Every store and gallery beckons the visitor to imagine her life bedecked in precious stones and metals. He dreams of an art etching worthy of bragging rights.  It is hard to walk the streets without spying some unusual treasured:  a key chain made of New Mexican license plates, giant painted gourds and hand stitched wall hangings.  It’s waiting there for you among the gourmet restaurants and cowboy bars.       

A short drive leads to native American outposts with bargains on beads, pottery and leather goods. 

Santa Fe’s 400th anniversary is in the year 2010.

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Freelance writer and photographer specializing in vivid, deeply reported stories about food, travel and family.

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